Owned by Dakis Joannou, an eminent collector of modern art, the philosophy of Yes! Hotels is Young, Enthusiastic and Seductive and denotes a commitment to creating a new form of art in hospitality;
Semiramis Hotel was the first YES! Hotel to say YES to bold design, superior luxury and exceptional service. It was designed by Karim Rashid as a fusion of Rashid’s loud refusal to embrace mundane functionality and Joannou’s dedication to the modern art world.
Semiramis encapsulates an aspirational and ambitious notion of design in the thriving area of Kifissia, a stylish, well-heeled suburb of Athens. It is the epitome of a 21st century creation, surprisingly and seamlessly fusing art and practicality in its 51 guest rooms.
Semiramis: Design Hotel in Kifissia, Athens – For Art Enthusiasts Only
Designed to appeal to art enthusiasts of all ages, Semiramis has an innovative approach to combining texture, materials and colour.
The striking palette of lime, pink, orange, yellow and white is the canvas upon which Rashid projected glass tiles, terrazzo floors, custom coloured carpets, patterned wall coverings and coloured glass walls. Works from Joannou’s extensive art collection including pieces by Jeff Koons, Sue Webster and Tim Noble can be viewed at the Semiramis’ bi-annually rotating exhibition in the public spaces.
Given free rein to create a total experience, Karim used his signature curvaceous forms and lollipop colours to offer a young, enthusiastic and seductive alternative to more traditional conceptions of hospitality, playing happily alongside a rotating collection of contemporary fine art, handpicked by owner and art collector Dakis Joannou.
Semiramis is a feast for the eyes for any guest: With an extra element of cheekiness, guests are encouraged to play with Rashid’s device for communicating with the outside world. Instead of the boring “Do Not Disturb” signs, he offers electronic message boards, which guests can personalise from their in-room keyboards.
He describes his overall view of Semiramis as “an intimate hotel that focuses on positive energy, heightened experiences, culture, design, and art. Semiramis is a place for new contemporary experiences – to enjoy, relax, work, and engage a new memorable experience unlike any other or anywhere else in the world.”
Thanks to its location on the slopes of Mount Pendeli—with a more moderate climate than Athens’s center—Kifissia has a long-standing reputation as an exclusive escape for the moneyed set. Once a philosophers’ retreat and then home to the military outposts of the USA, Germany, and Britain, the area still tailors to its clientele with a plethora of exclusive indulgences, such as fine restaurants and upscale bars.